The 5 Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

Has a loved one experienced nursing home abuse, or elder abuse at the hands of a caregiver? This blog will teach you how to:

  • Recognize the warning signs of elder abuse,
  • Report abuse in a nursing home, and
  • Find a nursing home abuse lawyer.

Placing a parent or a loved one in a nursing home is not a decision made lightly. In entrusting someone to look after our parents or aging loved ones, we expect high-quality care, with safety as the highest priority. Tragically, some nursing homes fail to uphold the standards of care they promise, leaving vulnerable seniors to become victims of elder abuse at the hands of their caregivers.

This blog will help you recognize the signs of nursing home abuse, show you how to report nursing home abuse, and help you find an attorney who specializes in elder abuse cases.

Talk to a Nursing Home Abuse Attorney About Your Case: (813) 222-2222

The 5 Types of Nursing Home Abuse

The types of abuse seen in nursing homes will vary case by case or include several of the most common forms of mistreatment: physical, emotional, sexual, financial, and/or neglect. In many cases, the nursing home abuse victim will not be able to talk about their abuse, either due to a physical issue affecting their speech or because of coercion from nursing home staff members.

That’s why family members should be aware of nursing home residents’ changes in behavior, physical health, and overall demeanor. By being aware of the signs, individuals can take the necessary steps to ensure their loved one’s safety and well-being. The five most common types of elder abuse (nursing home abuse) are listed below:

1. Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is one of the most apparent forms of abuse to detect. Families should be watchful for unexplained bruises, cuts, or injuries, particularly in areas that are typically covered by clothing. Broken bones, sprains, or recurrent injuries may also be indicative of physical abuse in an assisted living facility. Finally look for signs of restraint: marks from straps or ties, duct tape remnants etc. These could be indicators of inappropriate types of restraint. The older adult may also react in pain to parts of their body being moved or touched.

2. Emotional Abuse

Abuse doesn’t always manifest physically. A decline in a person’s mental or emotional well-being may also be indicative of a nursing home facility emotionally abusing its residents. Look for sudden mood swings, depression, anxiety, withdrawal, or fear, as these could all indicate nursing home abuse and neglect. Also make note of any behavioral changes, such as a reluctance to speak openly about their experiences. Emotional abuse can leave lasting scars, making it essential to address these signs promptly with the long-term facility.

3. Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse of an elder is unthinkable for those who entrust their loved ones to the care of a long-term care facility. This highly distressing form of elder abuse is shockingly common in homes. Signs of sexual abuse may include unexplained sexually transmitted infections (STIs), bruises or injuries around the genital area, or behavioral changes such as increased withdrawal or fearfulness. Seniors who are unable to communicate verbally may exhibit signs of discomfort or agitation when touched. Both men and women can experience sexual abuse.

4. Financial Abuse

Financial abuse involves the unauthorized or improper use of an elderly person’s funds, assets, or property. Families should closely monitor their loved one’s financial statements and be wary of sudden, unexplained changes in their financial situation. If you notice missing money, unauthorized withdrawals, or alterations to their will or estate plan that seem suspicious, investigate and report these instances promptly.

5. Neglect

Neglect is among the most common forms of nursing home abuse, and one that the World Health Organization shows is almost twice as commonly reported as abuse resulting in physical injuries (4.2% compared to 2.6% as reported by older adult victims). Signs of neglect include untreated medical conditions, poor personal hygiene, malnutrition, dehydration, or unclean living conditions. If you believe an older person is being neglected, talk to the nursing home administration immediately.

If your loved one is in immediate danger, call 911 and report the incident to Adult Protective Services (APS).

Talk to a Nursing Home Abuse Attorney About Your Case: (813) 222-2222

How to Report Abuse in a Nursing Home

Recognizing the signs of nursing home abuse is crucial—but taking prompt action is equally important to ensure the safety of your loved one and hold the responsible parties accountable. If you suspect elder abuse, you must assume the role of long-term care ombudsman to make sure that their case receives the attention it deserves. Follow these steps to report elder abuse:

1. Document and Report

If you suspect abuse, document your observations carefully. Take photos of any injuries, maintain a detailed record of behavioral changes, and gather information about suspicious financial transactions. Video recordings may also be helpful. Report your concerns to the nursing home administration, providing them with your documentation. Many facilities have protocols in place to address such issues and conduct internal investigations. You may want to hire a nursing home abuse attorney to assist you.

Help Us Fight Elder Abuse!

At Mattlaw™, we believe that no older person should ever experience the pain of abuse or neglect at the hands of a care provider. You can protect your loved ones by calling our reporting hotline at (813) 222-2222 and reporting your case to us; we will relay this information to the appropriate authorities. Reporting abuse is a crucial step in creating a safer and more compassionate environment for our elderly population.

2. Put Your Loved One First

During the investigative process, always prioritize the well-being of your loved one. Make sure they are receiving appropriate medical care, mental health counseling, and daily support to recover from the trauma. If their safety cannot be guaranteed in their current environment, consider moving them to a different care facility or private residence temporarily. Your nursing home abuse attorney will have the resources to help you make your loved one more comfortable as you begin reporting their elder abuse claim.

3. Contact the Authorities

If the nursing home fails to address the issue adequately, or if the abuse is extreme, contact local law enforcement or adult protective services immediately. These agencies have the expertise and authority to investigate allegations of abuse and take appropriate legal action. Your nursing home abuse attorney can help organize your case before presenting it on your behalf.

4. Get a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

Finding, documenting, and reporting nursing home abuse is a time-consuming and emotionally draining process. In cases of severe harm—or patterns of neglect—you should always consult with a nursing home abuse lawyer who specializes in elder abuse and nursing home negligence. An elder abuse lawyer will hold the responsible parties accountable, secure compensation for the victim, and help you conclude this sad chapter of your life.

Talk to a Nursing Home Abuse Attorney About Your Case: (813) 222-2222

How to Find a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

No family should have to face the horrors of nursing home abuse alone. At MattLaw, we specialize in nursing home abuse cases. We take pride both in our case outcomes and also in the compassion and human touch for which our law firm is famous. We treat every client with care and compassion that they deserve.

Why MattLaw?

MattLaw™ is a unique nursing home abuse law firm. We believe in educating our clients about the signs of abuse and helping them take swift action to prevent it from getting worse. Moreover, we act quickly on cases where elder abuse may be ongoing, or worsening; we understand that time is of the essence in these distressing personal injury cases.

Call MattLaw™ at (813) 222-2222 for a free, confidential consultation.

Matt Powell

About Matt

Matt Powell is a Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer by the Florida Bar who represents injured victims and their families. He is an experienced personal injury trial attorney who has been practicing since 1989 in Tampa, Florida. If you have any questions, feel free to call him at 813-222-2222 today.

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